On September 5-9, the 33rd European Seminar in Ethnomusicology took place in Tbilisi, Georgia. The conference was hosted by the International Research Center for Traditional Polyphony at Tbilisi State Conservatoire, which is very experienced in holding International Symposia on Traditional Polyphony since 2002.

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Ensemble Adilei and Canta Premana will conduct a concert of traditional folk music in the recital hall of the Tbilisi State Conservatory, September 4th at 7PM.

The concert will take place as a part of the 33rd Annual European Seminar in Ethnomusicology.

Entrance is free.

The deadline of receiving abstracts for the 33th ESEM seminar expired on March 15, 2017; 66 scholars from 22 countries have applied for participation.  The program committee will make announcement about the receipt in the middle of April. The Draft program will be uploaded on the web-site of ESEM in the May 1, 2017.


Photo by Giorgi khutsishvili


The International research Centre for Traditional Polyphony of Tbilisi State Conservatoire is saddened by the passing of Islam Pilpani – legendary in his lifetime folk musician. Long and fruitful activity made him a musical symbol of his native region. It was incredible, for Georgian and foreign musicians or simply music lovers to bypass Islam and his family. A brilliant choir master, singer and inimitable connoisseur of Svan musical instruments, a number of folk musicians were raised under his direction in ensemble Riho, which is known not only in Georgia, but in most remote foreign countries as well.

Islam hosted everyone who visited Svaneti, tirelessly shared his rich experience to all- both Georgians and foreigners, willing to learn Sval songs, including the participants of the International Symposia on Traditional Polyphony.

Islam was a distinguished and unique, his personality as thou united millennia-old history and contemporaneity of Svan culture, for this his every appearance on the stage made mesmerizing effect on the audience. This is an immense lost for Georgian culture. May he rest in peace!

With the financial support of the Georgian Ministry of Culture and Monument Protection and Rustaveli National Scientific Fund, Tbilisi State Conservatoire, The Folklore State Centre of Georgia and the International Centre for Georgian Folk Song  holded 8th International symposium on traditional polyphony at Tbilisi State Conservatoire. The Symposium was held under the patronage of Giorgi Margvelashvili, President of Georgia.

Among the participants of the 8th Symposium were 22 scholars from 21 countries of all 4 continents, including 15 Georgian researchers. Concerts of folk polyphony, held at the Grand Hall of State Opera House of Georgia, Recital Hall of Rustaveli Theatre and Recital Hall of the Conservatoire, add particular colour to the Symposium’s scientific sessions. The concerts were held with the participation of Georgian and foreign performers of Georgian polyphony, family ensembles, and ensemble Concordu Lussurzesu from Sardinia.

At the symposium were presented two films by Renato Morelli (Italy): “Two Generations of a Cuncordu Singing During Holy Week in Cuglieri (Sardinia, Italy) and “Mravalzhamier: a Singing Journey in Svaneti (Georgia) with Pilpani Family and Melbourne Georgian choir” and the film by Hugo Zemp (France) and Nona Lomidze (Austria/Georgia) “Table Songs in Kakheti”.